Singapore Personalised Employment Pass Service

personalised employment pass

Definition: What is Personalised Employment Pass in Singapore?

The Singapore Personalised Employment Pass is a winning visa solution for higher-paid professionals and executives who pursue more freedom and flexibility than a classic EP can give. Being a self-sponsored visa, the Personalised Employment Pass Singapore requires neither an employer nor any preliminary agreements. Unlike EP, PEP can be applied for by the foreigner themself! The Personal Employment Pass Singapore is a top-notch solution for people who haven’t landed the job yet. It allows you to come to Singapore and start job-hunting right on the place. Plus the visa enables you to be employed in any business niche and, unlike EP, it doesn’t oblige you to process a new pass every time you decide to switch over to a new employer. The visa’s maximum duration is 3 years. The pass, however, has its drawbacks, and one of them is a higher salary demand – over 18,000 SGD a month.

Benefits and Features of Personal Employment Pass

  • PEP application usually takes the MOM up to 6 weeks to process.
  • Personalised EP is issued only for 3 years after which the pass can’t be resumed. Before the expiry date, the PEP must be substituted with any other suitable working visa. Nevertheless, the opportunity to get a permanent residence before the expiry date lightens this drawback.
  • PEP doesn’t allow its holder to have his own business in Singapore (only classic EP provides this option).
  • Like the Employment Pass and other working visas, the PEP obliges its holder to pay the income tax (15% or so).

Advantages of Personalised Employment Pass

High-calibre professionals and managers opt for this visa because of independent application, freedom from employment bonds and other advantages of the Personal Employment Pass:
  • overseas professionals who possess impressive experience don’t have to initially get the offer in Singapore before applying. Your personal merits are the main premise of getting the Personalised Employment Pass in Singapore;
  • after your contract is closed, your PEP allows you to stay in the country for up to half a year for job-hunting. The PEP enables you to study the job market without haste and choose the most suitable position for your talent;
  • PEP doesn’t tie you to any single employer: you can experiment by swapping not only employers but also sectors;
  • you don’t have to re-apply for this visa each time you change your job; you just simply notify the Manpower Ministry about the change;
  • with the PEP, you can boldly apply for the Permanent Residency (PR) in 1 year. No need to wait until the visa’s expiration date;
  • being a PEP holder, you can process Dependant’s Passes for your legal spouse and children younger than 21 years;
  • your relatives can join you in SG after obtaining Long Term Visit Passes;
  • PEP holders are more attractive to employers: some companies reluctantly hire foreign talents because of the troublesome process of getting visa approved, but as your independent pass minimizes these troubles, you are more likely to be invited to the interview.

Disadvantages of Personalised Employment Pass

  • This visa has a very high salary benchmark: 18,000 SGD for those who apply for the first time and 12,000 SGD for those who upgrade to the PEP from P1.
  • Holders of the PEP aren’t eligible to start their own business in SG.
  • If the foreigner who stays on the PEP in SG fails to find work during more than 6 months, this PEP must be cancelled and the foreigner must leave the country.
  • PEP can’t be extended after the 3-year term.

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Eligibility Criteria and Requirements for Personalised Employment Pass in Singapore

The PEP has a lot of requirements in common with the Employment Pass, but as this visa doesn’t require the participation of an employer in the application process, the list of Singapore PEP requirements is shorter.
  • Salary criterion: if you are an executive who currently works abroad, your last monthly salary has to be no less than 18,000 SGD; if you currently hold the P1 Employment Pass, you can upgrade to PEP provided that your monthly income is no less than 12,000 SGD.
  • Foreigner must have a degree from a well-established educational institution.
  • Employee must be able to showcase his/her prominent employment history and prove 3-5 years of professional expertise in the relevant field. Skills the foreigner is going to contribute must be in demand in growing sectors of the Singapore economy.
  • Applicant must have a valid international passport.
Other Singapore Personalised Employment Pass requirements that will be sought for by the MOM are tax and bank statements, nationality, age, professional skills, and how your skills would complement the local skill set. However, a “brilliant” degree or a diploma don’t guarantee a successful PEP approval. MOM is more interested not in “papers”, but in perfect job profile, salary, compelling employer track record, and sought-after skills in Singaporean sunrise industries. The level of skills must correspond with the declared high salary.

Reason for Personalised Employment Pass Rejection

A PEP application usually has high chances for approval if all MOM demands are taken into consideration and professional visa assistance is involved. But if foreigners apply on their own without thorough preparation, profile building and preliminary assessment, getting PEP rejected is a common thing. However, even visa agency isn’t capable to win their visa battles in 100% times, and failures happen, but professionals know how to save the situation in case of Singapore PEP rejection. Having strong feedback with the government, we are capable of finding out the reason of rejection. As this visa is given on the basis of applicant’s personal merits, the reason why Personalised Employment Pass can be rejected usually hides in insufficiency of these achievements (or how they were introduced). You are given only 3 months to appeal a rejected Personalised Employment Pass. The applicant is required to provide new facts with the appeal; otherwise, the MOM promises to react with one more rejection. If you fail to appeal a rejected PEP from the first push, you are likely to miss your chance. That’s why competent preliminary assessment and elaborate preparation for the appeal are so crucial. Involve proficient visa consultancy to save your chance of obtaining the PEP.
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How to Apply: the Best Personalised Employment Pass Scheme

Foreigners are authorized to apply for the PEP on their own behalf as this kind of working visa doesn’t require a sponsor. However, we still recommend involving a professional visa help because of constant latent changes in MOM trends. If you are the existing P1 pass holder, you will only need to fill in the PEP application form. Other applicants also need to submit additional documentation:
  • Educational certifications and qualifications
  • Relevant employment contacts
  • Documents that prove the employment background
  • The copy of your passport’s particulars page (or another document you travel with)
  • Salary slips for the last 3 months
  • Bank statements
  • The latest tax statement.
All required documents must be in impeccable order and professionally translated into English. Applications usually take the MOM 4-6 weeks to process – much longer than in the case with the EP. That’s why when the time presses and you aren’t sure you would manage digital application and the elaborate paperwork, you should better entrust your case to the skilled hands of visa specialists who know how to apply for personal working pass in Singapore in the shortest time.

Personalised Employment Pass Renewal Process

PEP is issued only for 3 years after which the renewal of Personalised Employment Pass isn’t stipulated. So if you need to stay in the country for some more time, you should obtain another suitable working visa before your present PEP expires. But this rarely becomes an option for foreigners who prefer staying in Singapore for an indefinite period of time as PEP provides the best chances for getting a permanent residency. You can apply for the PR in one year after arriving in Singapore.

Why Apply for Personalised Employment Pass with Help of Professional Agents/Consultants?

Meeting criteria and submitting the proper documents are very important for the PEP application. Since the PEP is a self-sponsored visa, the applicant must argue his/her personal merits. You need to ensure your papers fully reflect your professional background and are compiled faultlessly. Plus personal experience is a sensitive stuff, and arguing it can be a challenge sometimes. If you aren’t sure you’d manage the paperwork and your skills representation, please don’t hesitate to contact our seasoned visa team. Being aware of the MOM latest demands, we are proficient in building up your employment profile with solid documentation and representing your potential in the most favourable light.

Get FREE Assessment of Your Personalised Employment Pass Eligibility Today!

It is important to estimate your eligibility well in advance of starting the PEP application process. During our free PEP eligibility assessment, you’ll get a deep insight into your strong and weak points and a couple of smart instructions on how to make your application sound more professional. After the assessment, you will be able to cope with the paperwork and improve your profile to avoid a pitiful rejection. Please contact us to book a FREE assessment and get a full backup in every milestone on your way to the PEP approval.

FAQs for PEP

+ Can a Personal Employment Pass holder apply for PR in Singapore?

Yes, foreigners who arrive in Singapore under personalized employment visa have the highest possible chance to be qualified for a permanent residence. Being the privileged version of the Employment Pass, PEP is subject to higher demands such as the salary (at least 18,000 SGD), education and individual merits which act as a filter for the most valuable candidates. Despite the PEP is issued for the period of 3 years, the holder doesn’t need to wait until this period expires to initiate his/her PR application. This can be done much earlier (after a year of working in the country or so) on the assumption of being employed at the moment of application.

+ How to convert PEP to PR Singapore?

Personalised Pass is valid only during 3 years after which, in order to continue living and working in Singapore, the employee must either upgrade to permanent residence or choose another suitable visa (for example, the Employment Pass). Facts that the employee has worked a certain amount of years in Singapore and is employed at the moment of application are mandatory criteria for getting PR. As PEP allows its holder to interrupt the employment during the 3-year period and switch over to new employers, it is crucial that the foreigner consults a visa professional to strategize the best application time when all the requirements are met.

+ Can a Singapore PEP holder apply for a Dependent’s Pass?

Yes, PEP holders are fully eligible to act as sponsors for their official spouses and children (younger than 21 years old) due to their high salary rate. They do not need to get a guarantee from a banker to be qualified. PEP holders must lodge an application for a Dependent’s Pass manually only, and the procedure takes up to 5 weeks.

+ When Personal Employment Pass is approved?

After you submit the PEP application along with a set of supportive documents, the government needs up to 5 weeks to process your request. Ensure you provide sufficient documentary that verifies your education, employment history, feedbacks from your previous employment, and salary slips, tax statements, and bank account statements for the last 3 months. Unless your documents are in English, you should involve professional translation services. If the government finds your application satisfactory and approves your personalised visa, you will receive an approval letter at the address you provided in your application. After you get the letter, you have half a year to arrive in Singapore and get your pass card.

+ What to do if PEP is rejected?

Rejections happen because the government finds your personal merits insufficient for getting the privileged personalised visa. But rejection doesn’t mean you miss your chance forever; you can win back the approval if you make a well-considered appeal. The applicant is given 3 months to appeal the MOM’s negative decision. Then the authorities will consider your appeal in 3 weeks. The Ministry of Manpower usually explains the reason of rejection in the letter. If no, the expert agency that has perfectly tuned communication with the government can investigate into the reason and strategize a winning appeal. It is important to take the authorities’ recommendation into account and fill the “gaps” in your profile. If no new information is provided at the appeal, you can get the second rejection and probably lose your chance. In case you aren’t sure you would be able to fortify your profile with additional documents or add more weighty trumps to your profile, it’s better to involve an expert visa agency that is seasoned in profile building.

+ How to check PEP conditions?

If you apply on your own using the service called EP Online, you can check the status of your application and the conditions of getting the PEP on this governmental source. If you entrust lodging your application and paperwork to an expert visa agency, you don’t have to worry as the consultants will keep you updated about your pass’ status and inform when additional documents are needed. Due to a well-tuned communication with the approving authorities, the agency is able to avert all possible problems and misunderstandings that often cause rejections.

+ What to do if I lost my PEP card in Singapore?

If you lose or damage your PEP card, you are given 7 days to require a replacement card. You can do it online using the service EP Online. You will need to pay a fee for the lost card, which is bigger if you lose your card again. On the online service, you will find detailed explanations how and where you are to collect your replacement PEP card. Usually, 4 working days are enough to produce a new card. If you occasionally find your old lost card, you must return it to authorities right away.If you were robbed and your card was stolen, please contact police to enable them to address the issue. If you lose your card while being abroad, to secure your right to enter Singapore, you must get the Embarkation card for visitors when you arrive in the country.

+ What is PEP tax in Singapore?

If you have worked under your PEP for 183 days and more during the previous fiscal year, your income is subject to personal income tax that is 15% for foreigners. As PEP holders are allowed to stay unemployed no more than during 6 months, their income is likely to be taxed. You should involve a tax consultation if you have doubts. Singapore taxes only incomes earned inside the country. Foreigners cannot expect getting personal tax reliefs.

+ Cancelation process: how can I cancel my PEP visa?

If you fail to find a work in Singapore and stay unemployed during more than 6 months, your PEP must be cancelled without a right of being reinstated. You can do it using a service EP Online. The procedure is immediate, and you must return your PEP card to authorities in 7 days. But this, however, doesn’t mean you must leave the country right away. You can get up to 30 days of stay in Singapore if during the cancelation you process a Short-term visit pass (using EP Online). Moreover, you are allowed to get another suitable employment visa and stay in Singapore for work provided that you manage to find a job in this 30-day period. Please take into account that EP is a visa connected to a specific employer so you must get the offer first.

+ What is the difference: PEP vs EP Singapore?

Personalised Employment Pass is VIP version of EP designed for the top-tier overseas professionals and directors. The basic difference between them lies in the freedom and flexibility the “individual” PEP provides: its holders aren’t tied to any company and can change employers without need to process a new working pass every time. Moreover, the foreigner can arrive in the country before landing a job, and even remain unemployed during 6 months a year. PEP is a more winning option for high-paid professionals who prefer to stay independent while getting all perks of a new career field.Another difference lies in these passes’ duration and renewability. The privileged PEP gives its holder only 3 years in Singapore without a chance of renewal while EP is issued for a smaller period (2 years maximum), but can be renewable the unlimited number of times (under certain requirements).All requirements are similar for both PEP and EP except the salary benchmark. It is much higher for PEP (18,000 SGD) than for EP (3,300 SGD); however, if you upgrade to PEP from the P1 class of EP, the benchmark is lower – 12,000 SGD.

+ What is better: PEP vs PR in Singapore?

Both PEP and Permanent residence give a foreigner freedom to work in Singapore without being tied to a specific company. But PEP gives this freedom only for 3 years while permanent residence fries you permanently. Both visas boost your chances for employment because the hiring company doesn’t have to bother with applying for a visa for you.PEP is better for high-paid professionals with impressive personal merits and working background who wouldn’t like to compromise their freedom and set limits for their professional growth. It better fits people who either don’t have far-seeing plans concerning Singapore (they expect to use his work permit as a boost for their career and then they plan to switch over to something else) or the opposite – plan to use their chance for permanent residence to prolong their stay in Singapore for unlimited period. As PEP isn’t renewable (its validity is limited to 3 years only), it exposes you to a choice: whether you see it as something temporary or as a ladder for PR.If you are ready to settle down in Singapore for a much longer period of time, it’s wiser to pursue PR as sooner as possible to free yourself from any possible tensions. It is possible to get qualified for PR holding any kind of employment visa, but PEP and EP give the best chance and shorten the period you have to wait before applying.

+ How to change the address for PEP?

PEP Holders are freed from the headache of processing new work passes each time they change the employer, but despite they are “free”, they still have to keep the government informed about any change that happen to them (a change of employer, personal details, or physical address in Singapore). If you move to a new accommodation, you must inform the authorities no later than 2 weeks after your move. You can do it using your account in the service EP Online; it takes a couple of minutes to make the change. If you don’t do it, you may be fined.
If you have any other questions that aren’t covered in this article, please don’t hesitate to contact our expert team. You can always book our competent assessment for free.

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Harry Goldman (United Kingdom)

Let me take this opportunity to thank Visa Express. With their guidance, I managed to get 3 awesome years of employment freedom in Singapore with my Personal Employment Pass. I have found their service professional & exceptionally good. They truly know the approach to the MOM.

Angie Webb, IT Company (Singapore)

Thank you for your assistance in processing the Employment Passes for us.

Moira Bell, Shipping Company (Singapore)

Your services have been excellent and I would like to take this opportunity of thanking you for all your support and co-operation in obtaining the passes, without which I would have struggled to get the passes myself.
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